The end of maps as Sat Nav users lose brains

sat_navThe scourge of Sat Nav appears to have rendered drivers clueless and dependent on the technology to arrive at their destination.

According to research by GPS technology specialists Garmin, almost 40% of drivers don’t know how to navigate using a traditional map and a further 16% admit that they are so reliant on a Sat Nav that they use it for regular journeys.

As a driver who loves getting lost and likes to ask for directions because it means I meet PEOPLE in unusual situations and do not reply on a mobile ivory tower to insulate myself from real life, this comes as no surprise.

One thing that remains the same, however. Be it digital or analogue, the report says that arguing over directions remains one of driving’s biggest hazards, with a third of respondents saying that it creates arguments with their partners.

The press release tries to put a spin on this depressing result… ‘Rather than seeing technology as consuming traditional skills like map reading, it should be celebrated for delivering speed, accuracy and safety’.

This is not something I’ve ever seen when Sat Nav drivers pull away, then stop instantly while they fiddle with its controls. It is the devil’s work and is sucking away our brains. Maps are like books, they keep us intelligent, not driverless Google car guinea pigs.

US company acquires African startup Saya

Robert-LampteyOne of the smartest people I’ve met as I’ve built up my African network over the past two years is the charismatic and smart Robert Lamptey.

As CEO and founder of Ghana-based mobile messaging company Saya Mobile, Robert has been an inspiration for many Ghanaians, and Africans for that matter. He is a better coder than anybody who has attempted MIT’s coding challenges and he has built up an excellent company in the last three years.

So it is of great pleasure to announce (somewhat belatedly, been on holiday), Saya’s acquisition by New Jersey company Kirusa, which has acquired the technology, IP and workforce of Saya that will now be working on Kirusa’s mobile applications. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. Continue reading

Brandwatch back to the future with Hindsight

brandwatch_hindsightSocial media analytics company Brandwatch has launched Brandwatch Twitter Hindsight, which provides its customers with the ability to retrieve all relevant Tweets since 2006, as well as enjoy continued access to full real-time Twitter data.

While other platforms in the industry only offer up to two years of Twitter data, Hindsight offers access to the full eight years of public Tweets since Twitter’s inception. Continue reading

MLOVE YOUtopia: smart and good

MLOVEI love Harald Neidhardet, the curator of the MLOVE festivals and was lucky enough to present at one of his events in Berlin a couple of years ago; it’s the only event where I’ve ever jumped into a well after being on stage.

This year was the fifth anniversary of the MLOVE ConFestival Europe and took place in a castle south of Berlin and I was gutted that I couldn’t make it this year. It featured speakers and topics from the Internet of Things, smart cities, creative design, brands and mobility, maker movement to Quantified Self and bio hacking… the future, basically. Continue reading

Saltside classifieds kick butt in Africa and Asia

How toEuropean tech company Saltside Technologies, which previously raised $25m from AB Kinnevik and has been in stealth mode since founding, is already a market leader in classified sites in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Ghana.

Founded by former Skype employees, the company has experienced 300% annual growth since its inception three years ago by providing vital online infrastructure for emerging markets, at a time when the vast majority of people are using the internet for the first time. Continue reading